Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday that New York was going to turn the page on the coronavirus pandemic as the state that has been hit hardest by the outbreak begins to slowly reopen.
"We're going to turn the page on Covid-19 and we're going to start focusing on reopening and how we reopen and how smart we are in reopening," Cuomo said on Twitter.
Cuomo rang the opening at the partially reopened New York Stock Exchange and held his daily press conference at the Wall Street financial hub following its shutdown in March.
Under the rules of the reopening, just 80 or so floor brokers are working at the NYSE, about 25% of the total prior to the pandemic.
"Today I ring in the start of the trading day and the return of traders to the floor of the NYSE," Cuomo tweeted. "In the two months the floor was dark, NYers bent the curve and slowed the spread of this virus."
The state began its phased reopening plan in regions of the state that have met seven health criteria, which includes declining hospitalizations and new cases, as well as sufficient hospital bed and testing capacity, among other requirements.
New York City has not reached the benchmarks and Mayor Bill de Blasio has said he is hopeful the city can begin reopening in the first half June.
"As more regions of the state begin reopening, we are carefully monitoring health data to make sure that everything is going in the right direction," Cuomo said. "We rely on science and data to guide us - not emotion or politics."
The Mid-Hudson Region began Phase 1 reopening Tuesday Cuomo said, after meeting all the required metrics. Long Island is on track to enter Phase 1 Wednesday.
Cuomo said Tuesday that 73 more people died of the virus in the state, the third day in the last four with deaths under 100. During the height of the outbreak in April, more than 1,000 people a day were dying.
The state has reported a total of 29,229 as of Tuesday, according to Johns Hopkins University.
Stocks in the U.S. were surging Tuesday as investors responded to steps by economies across the globe to ease coronavirus lockdowns and signs of progress toward a vaccine.